Forum

Bad Temper

In recent years I’ve noticed myself becoming more easily irritated and bad tempered with my children, something of a personality change since I was always a calm person. I have even found myself swearing and using bad language, including the F word which is somewhat embarrassing and a bad example that I regret. I am not depressed or deeply frustrated by disability issues but just feeling something has chemically altered in my bahaviour. Maybe just a consequence of getting older. Anybody else feel this?

It is entirely possible that the meds you are on and/or the MS itself has contributed to some kind of chemical imbalance, but it’s also possibile that you have some damage in your frontal lobe that has reduced your control over inappropriate behaviour.

Plus, while you say you are not deeply frustrated or depressed, you are having to deal with pain, fatigue and an uncertain future. Those things on their own make most people more irritable!

When there is damage in the brain, the body tries to repair it and/or create a new route to still be able to do that function. The more damage, the more difficult this is. So people with MS use a lot more of their brain to do a task than people without MS. That’s hard work. Which means that there isn’t the same level of resources left to deal with other things, e.g. like minding our behaviour and language. So even if there isn’t an actual problem in the area that inhibits “childish” behaviour, there may not be enough resources to make sure it works at full capacity. Attention is the mechanism that sort of switches resources between different areas of the brain. So once you notice what you’re doing or if someone draws your attention to it, then you should be more able to engage your behaviour control centre. This explanation sort of fits with my experience anyway: I sometimes start swearing a lot, but when I notice what I’ve been doing, I stop doing it.

So, lots of possible explanations.

If I were you, I’d check the meds first. Did you notice it starting after you started a particular pill?

If not, then maybe you need to ask someone to give you a nudge if you behave out of character. That might be enough to remind your control centre to get back on the job!

Karen x

Thanks for that well considered reply Rizzo, its very helpful to have another perspective. I am taking a lot of meds, but all except the Vessicare (urinary incontinence) predate the rash of symptoms that have led to me being referred to a Neuro.

mrbobowen wrote:
In recent years I've noticed myself becoming more easily irritated and bad tempered with my children, something of a personality change since I was always a calm person. I have even found myself swearing and using bad language, including the F word which is somewhat embarrassing and a bad example that I regret. I am not depressed or deeply frustrated by disability issues but just feeling something has chemically altered in my bahaviour. Maybe just a consequence of getting older. Anybody else feel this?
I have noticed a prediliction for profanity lately; I will hear words leaving my mouth that my concious waking brain never wished to put there; I suspect my subconcious of getting things out no matter how well my internal censor trys to block them! Heyho and ***** Clarexxx

I recognise a lot in your story ‘MrBoBowen’. As we have a (mobile) daughter with special needs, it is just not possible to have a rest when needed. So when the unavoidable fatigue ‘kicks in’ and there is no opportunity to have a proper rest, that’s when I lose ‘control’ and start saying things that I do not want to say. I regret it every time it happens and I always think (OK try to think…) that it makes matters worse.
There is still a long way to go (perhaps an endless one…) but I am trying to be aware of it when it is about to happen… (mid afternoons are the worst moments of the day when it comes to fatigue).
Also, as my daughter copies behaviour, I just need to push myself that little bit more when necessary…
Good luck, I suppose you have made the first step by admitting that something is not quite right.

I have noticed this a lot recently. I say things that are wholly inappropriate for the situation, and it usually involves swearing and/or something nasty :oops: Mostly this happens when the fatigue gets bad, and I am a devil for not listening to my body, which inevitably ends up with me being short tempered. Really not in my nature at all and I feel instantly mortified as soon and it falls out of my mouth.
Glad I am not alone in suffering this horrible symptom :evil: